Michael Ubaldi, August 5, 2004.
So Republican Senator Richard Shelby of Alabama is suspected of leaking classified information to reporters? This is cut-and-dried. If found culpable, he should suffer the same penalty as Patrick Leahy of Vermont when the Democratic senator — who leaked to the press like a sieve — snuck a draft report on the Iran-Contra affair to an NBC reporter in 1987: suspension from the Senate Intelligence Committee.
Likely the Democrats will try, but fail, to use Shelby to deflect from former National Security Advisor and Kerry-Edwards foreign policy advisor Sandy Berger's theft and/or replacement of classified information. And some press agencies will drop a few facts into concentrated innuendo, set to "puree" and pour the resulting contents onto their newspages over the next days and weeks. Why pass up politicizing Shelby when the Washington Post and New York Times have already wrung the latest terror alert for every last drop of scandal? There's one element of the story to consider, since Fox News figures prominently, from Tom Maguire:
[F]ox did not run [the classified information given to Carl Cameron by Shelby]; Shelby then talked to CNN, which did.